The uncontrollable problem of boxing means more belts, confusion

This year he has a chance to go down as one of the biggest in boxing in the last 25 years, maybe more. For years, we complained about the discrepancy that came together and how they devalued the belts.

Someone, somewhere heard a scream.

So far in 2022 we have seen these important matches:

  • Josh Taylor won a partial decision via Jack Catterall for the undisputed title in super lightweight.

  • Gennady Golovkin stopped Ryota Murata for unified medium weight titles.

  • Errol Spence Jr. stopped Yordenis Ugas for unified welter weight titles.

  • Tyson Fury stopped Dillian Whyte for WBC / Linear Heavyweight degrees.

  • Shakur Stevenson decided Oscar Valdez for united titles in super spring weight.

  • Katie Taylor won a partial decision via Amanda Serrano for the undisputed lightweight women’s title.

  • Dmitry Bivol decided Canelo Alvarez for the WBA semi-heavyweight title.

  • Jermell Charlo stopped Brian Castaño for the undisputed title in super welterweight.

  • Gervonta Davis knocked out Rolando Romero for the WBA lightweight title.

It will get better. On Saturday (Sunday in Australia), George Kambosos Jr. fights. with Devin Haney for the undisputed lightweight title. On June 7, Naoya Inoue and Nonito Donaire Jr. they will compete for a united title in a bantam vase.

Artur Beterbiev will face Joe Smith in New York on June 18 for three of the four semi-heavyweight title belts. On June 25 in San Antonio, Jesse Rodriguez and Sri Sor Rungvisai will compete for the WBC Super Flyweight title. Also on this card, Murodjon Akhmadaliev will face Ronny Rios for united titles in super bantam weight.

On July 23, Oleksandr Usyk will face Anthony Joshua in Saudi Arabia for a united heavyweight title. And on September 17, Alvarez will meet Golovkin for an undisputed title in super middleweight. Claressa Shields will compete with Savannah Marshall for an undisputed middleweight women’s title in September. And Mikaela Mayer will fight Alycia Baumgardner for a unified women’s title in the super spring weight on the day to be determined.

That’s just part of what’s going on.

But, and there is always some but, it is far from perfect. But this time, instead of blaming cautious promoters or risk-avoiding managers, hesitant boxers or television networks who don’t want to mix, the blame goes directly to the sanctions authorities.

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - MAY 05: Canelo Alvarez holds various belts as he poses during a press conference at the KA Theater at the MGM Grand Hotel & Casino on May 05, 2022 in Las Vegas, Nevada.  Alvarez will challenge WBA semi-heavyweight champion Dmitry Bivol for his title on May 7 at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.  (Photo: Ethan Miller / Getty Images)

The undisputed super medium weight champion Canelo Alvarez holds various belts. (Photo: Ethan Miller / Getty Images)

If you talk to a failed boxing fan and tell him about all the big matches and great matches that have already taken place, and about what’s on the agenda, the real reaction is to roll your eyes.

They have been conditioned by years of false promises not to believe it. And he will return with some version of the quote: “It is not possible to know who is the champion in any weight category”, which should make anyone interested in boxing, whether financial or entrenched, annoyed.

However, this is true and perfectly embodies the Kambosos-Haney struggle. It is billed as an undisputed championship, and it is, but the sanctions authorities, in this case the WBA and the WBC, make it difficult to understand.

If you were careful, you saw Davis disqualify Romer in a bad way to keep the WBA title light. So how can you believe that a Kambosos-Haney winner is an undisputed champion when undisputed means a fighter who holds an IBF-WBA-WBC-WBO belt in the same division?

And then WBC caused problems a few years ago when she promoted Vasily Lomachenko from a WBC champion to a WBC Franchise champion. No one knew what it was, and for the most part it was an opportunity for WBC President Mauritius Sulaiman to donate a spectacular, shiny new belt to one of the best fighters in the world.

The problem with this, however, is that titles should be won and lost in the ring, not by upgrading the authorities to another status or creating a completely duplicate title.

Kambosos versus Haney is for the undisputed lightweight title, as Lomachenko won the WBA-WBC-WBO belts in the ring and Teofimo Lopez won the IBF belt in the ring. Before Lomachenko and Lopez fought, Sulaiman told reporters that the winner would be the WBC champion.

Lopez won the fight and was indisputable, although his name was not due to ambiguities about the status of the franchise belt. And when Lopez lost to Kambosos, Kambosos became the undisputed champion. But Haney won the WBC belt, which is why Lopez ridiculed him as an “e-mail champion.”

It is an uncontrollable problem. Heavyweight Usyk angered Joshua last year to win IBF-WBA-WBO titles. Fury has held the WBC title since the elimination of Deontay Wilder in 2020. But on June 11 in Miami, Florida, Trevor Bryan will defend the WBA heavyweight title against Daniel Dubois. Bryan received the belt – essentially a gift from WBA promoter Don King – in 2018 when he stopped BJ Flores for the “WBA’s free temporary heavyweight title.” A temporary belt is rarely needed and was not the case in 2018, but the WBA did it and now it obscures the picture.

Josh Taylor celebrates winning a junior welterweight match against Jack Catterall at OVO Hydro in Glasgow.  Image Date: Saturday, February 26, 2022. (Photo: Steve Welsh / PA Images via Getty Images)

The Superlight Division no longer has an undisputed champion after the WBA stripped Josh Taylor of the tape in early May for refusing to defend. (Photo by Steve Welsh / PA Images via Getty Images)

Boxing stakeholders – promoters, television managers, managers – must convene a meeting with the leaders of these sanctioning authorities and point out how harmful it is for the sport to constantly pursue these scams.

It’s bad enough that each of the four sanctions authorities has a different champion. But when an individual sanctioning body has two or three champions within a division, it devalues ​​it All belts.

Fighters should not be stripped if they are fighting a champion from another organization or if they are defending one of the first three at least once a year.

Organizations should rank all fighters in their rankings, even those who hold belts in other organizations.

And there should never be a temporary champion unless the real champion can defend the belt after six months of inactivity and is unable to return within three months.

This would make sense to the belts, help bring back some wayward fans, create new ones and provide a sense of order that boxing lacks.

So Kambosos and Haney are fighting for an unquestionable title. The winner should then fight Davis, who was so impressive when he defeated Romero to end all doubts.

And then maybe this little hot wave that box is on will be more than that and can turn into something really meaningful and long-lasting.

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